27/08/2008 - 22:00

Housing affordability boost as prices weaken

27/08/2008 - 22:00

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Housing affordability boost as prices weaken
Housing affordability in Western Australia has improved over the June quarter in the latest confirmation that house prices are weakening, while across the country levels remained at a 24-year low. The Housing Industry Association’s Index of Housing Affordability for the June quarter showed that affordability improved by 6 per cent in Perth and was up nearly 9 per cent in regional areas. While it appears to be good news for homebuyers HIA director Ben Phillips told WA Business News that, when comparing state to state, WA is the second least affordable region behind Queensland. Of all capital cities, Mr Phillip said Sydney maintained the top spot while Perth and Brisbane were not far behind. According to HIA, dwelling price movements in Perth over the June quarter dropped 5.5 per cent, while in regional areas prices dropped by 8 per cent. “[The drop in house prices] has led WA in becoming a little more affordable, but having said that I still wouldn’t consider it in any way affordable,” Mr Phillip said. As long median house prices remained at about $500,000, things would be difficult for WA home buyers for the long term, he said. However, I guess it’s a good sign for WA that there’s been a little bit of an easing in the house price, but we also know that over the next six months interest rates are more likely to fall, so from that perspective things are looking a little bit brighter for WA for the short-term,” Mr Phillips said.

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